As a teacher of gifted and talented children for the Weiner Public Schools, Patricia Hesse works with students of all ages. "I work both with very young and with older students and have found that every age is my favorite," she says. The particulars of her job allow her to follow a student's progress from second grade until graduation; such an eleven-year span makes for strong bonds and lasting relationships. In her second year of teaching, Mrs. Hesse realized that both she and her students were being condemned to boredom by the lesson plans outlined in teacher manuals. She decided then and there to set off in search of more engaging and lively approaches to teaching. She has never looked back. Mrs. Hesse favors the large-scale project that involves and draws on the talents of the whole school, and in some cases, creates a whole world. "One such project was a Renaissance Fair, complete with guild stalls, Shakespeare plays, a knighting ceremony, and a large student-constructed cathedral and castle. I believe all students are entrusted to us as 'possibilities' of what could be," she says. "As educators it is our mission to act upon that trust.
Arkansas State University - Jonesboro, B.A.